Frontiers in European Entrepreneurship Research
Frontiers in European Entrepreneurship series
Edited by Friederike Welter, Robert Blackburn, Elisabet Ljunggren and Bjørn Willy Åmo
Chapter 3: Entrepreneurship policy as discourse: appropriation of entrepreneurial agency
This chapter provides an analysis of a particular entrepreneurship policy initiative in an emerging economy, Turkey. The policy initiative analysed in the chapter involves a support programme that was launched in 2009 with the goal of providing seed-financing to young entrepreneurs for technology-based venture ideas. The analysis offered in the chapter primarily adopts a discourse-based approach. That is, rather than examine the objective premises, structure and outcomes of this particular support programme by the Turkish government, the chapter traces the discursive field this policy initiative created and the effects that were performed within this field. With a specific focus on the power relations that are performed in and through this discursive field, the chapter shows and discusses how the policy discourse serves to frame entrepreneurship in a way that enables the government to adopt and appropriate entrepreneurial agency and to discursively leverage this position to entrench its political power. With this empirical focus, the chapter develops the argument that in addition to viewing policies as instruments to foster entrepreneurial activity, they can also be taken as discursive performances that serve to frame and construct the social or economic ‘problems’ that they address; define and limit the ways in which these problems could be approached and talked about; constitute the identities of various actors that are involved in the policy space and determine how these actors are to be interrelated.
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